Well…hopefully last night was the end of the rainy season in Northern California.  Last year at this time, I was wishing for more rain.  Now, the drought is officially over!  I look forward to pulling some weeds and planting sunflower and zinnia seeds along with a few tomato plants.  At the moment, I’m on the mend due to a stress fracture in my left foot, which gives me more time for knitting.

A couple of years ago, The Yarn Truck was parked at one of my local yarn stores, and I purchased two skeins of OctoBaa 100% superwash merino (8 ply sport weight) 270 yards, from Indiodragonfly.  What can I create with 540 yards of yarn?  Time to swatch.

Photo credit:  Mary Lou Fall


This stitch pattern above reminds me of ornamentation found on Etruscan and Greek architecture, vases and tomb paintings.  I had an idea of combining two different stitch patterns in one project, so I studied the specific visual qualities of the above swatch.  I noticed the dimensionality created by the knit and purl stitches.  Also, if you look closely, there is a pattern within a pattern.  Do you see it?  Notice the movement of the pattern.

The first swatch pictured above deepened my desire to find other patterns which would express  surface movement.

Swatching #3_1_1_1_1
Photo credit:  Mary Lou Fall

Isolating the hidden pattern in Swatch 1, inspired me to seek out the use of cables. Swatch 2 represents an element found in Swatch 1.

Swatching #2_1_1_1
Photo credit:  Mary Lou Fall

Swatch 3 builds upon surface elements found in Swatches 1 and 2.  The cables found in both swatches lean to the left and the use of garter stitch horizontally separates the vertical elements of stockinette stitch.

Recently, I’ve made a concerted effort to really “look” at my knitting.  What relationship develops between the yarn and stitches while creating the overall pattern?  How does this relationship visually enhance the color and qualities of the fiber?  Or, is it the other way around…How does the synergy between the elements affect the outcome?  I believe, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.


Stitches On Canvas

Why shouldn’t stitches be on canvas?  Stitches can be sewn, woven, knitted and crocheted using plastic, bamboo, wire, animal and plant fiber to name a few.  Stitches hold something together to adorn the body, or hold someone together when nothing else seems to work.  Stitches are created using a machine or by hand producing added texture and dimension to our lives.  So, why shouldn’t stitches be on canvas?

Stitches On Canvas
Photo Credit: Mary Lou Fall

Knitted wire stitches with beads held together by a stitched Dorset Button sewn by hand attached to felted wool embellished with a silk cocoon on silk fabric.

Stitches On Canvas #2
Photo Credit: Mary Lou Fall

Mixed-media stitches on painted canvas.

Stitches on Canvas #3
Photo Credit: Mary Lou Fall

A stitched Dorset Button sewn to a piece of silk stitched to a felted piece of wool, which reminds me of my favorite flower, the sunflower.


The sunflower is mine, in a way – Vincent Van Gogh


Before the Pantone Color Guide published in 1963, A. Boogert, a Dutch artist produced a body of work about mixing watercolors, dated 1692.  The entire book may be viewed in full resolution at:

The following link shows actual painted pages with a summary of the book.

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